The reason for the tricky welds might have been technical and engineering-oriented, but the result is certainly beautiful. The expertly welded exhaust, a testament to the engineering and skill of the Honda Race Team engineers, will likely be scrapped soon, only to be replaced with another: a common and frequent consequence of using such lightweight materials. Honda’s Repsol motos make use of ultralight exhaust components which are all custom-made per bike, in order to save weight, and to tailor to the personal preferences of each of their team-members.
|The Yamaha team uses a lightweight Akropovic exhaust and carbon fibre accents|
The Yamaha Movistar Team, by contrast, uses a more standard – if less stylish – exhaust. Making use of a 1000cc inline 4 in their 240+ horsepower YZR-M1, the Yamaha team uses a standard 1-exit exhaust system with an Akropovic slip-on style exhaust pipe; saving weight with a number of carbon fibre body materials rather than lightweight, though disposable, exhaust systems.
According to fcaemea.com, the Movistar bike features carbon fibre components on its “the front fairing, the front bumper and the seat cover.” In order to save weight, alongside the aforementioned ultralight exhaust. Ducati-Marlboro, however, beat them to the punch, and has been using carbon fibre frames since the mid-2000s, adding in even a carbon fibre swing arm in 2009. The swingarm alone cut seconds off of his lap performance in Qatar after its introduction, and that was before refinement.
Carbon Fibre, which splits and shaters in crashes, is far more difficult to repair than traditional materials, and oftentimes just needs to be outright replaced. While this isn't so much a problem for motoGP teams who have lots of money to throw around, it can be more problematic for people purchasing motorcycles with Carbon-Fibre accents